Washington Nationals fans usher in new season at opening day

Washington Nationals fans usher in new season at opening day

WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — Suzie Ferguson has seen all sorts of games, including the World Series, but Monday’s game at Nationals Park was her very first opening day.

“I remember coming to see the Senators when I was a little girl with Frank Howard and all,” she said. “I’ve been to World Series before and playoff games, but I’ve never been to an opening day, so I’m pretty excited about it.

  • The Budweiser Clydesdales and Nationals mascot Screech make an entrance on opening day at Nationals Park on April 1, 2024.
    The Budweiser Clydesdales and Nationals mascot Screech make an entrance on opening day at Nationals Park on April 1, 2024.
  • Opening day at Nationals Park on April 1, 2024.
    Opening day at Nationals Park on April 1, 2024.
  • Opening day at Nationals Park on April 1, 2024.
    Opening day at Nationals Park on April 1, 2024.

Fans like Ferguson flocked to see the Washington Nationals’ first game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday. Even the rain cleared out just in time for larger crowds to start forming.

Fans excited to have Nationals at home

Some drivers near Nats Park got a bit of a gloomy reminder — no parking during stadium events. D.C. vehicles towed several cars from street parking before the gates opened — including a DC Fire and EMS car.

And those roads did have to be cleared for the famous Budweiser Clydesdales to make their grand entrance with the Nationals’ mascot, Screech.

Cheers erupted from the crowd that had gathered when the gates opened at 2 p.m.

“This is our home team. They’re gonna do great this year,” said one fan, Olga Acosta. “Great things are going to happen.”

The season wasn’t the only thing that was new in the park — fans also got their first look at off-season improvements, including facial recognition scanners that allowed registered fans to get in faster and a new digital scoreboard.

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